BOSTON — The Boston Celtics will be without a key member of their starting unit when they host the Los Angeles Lakers at TD Garden on Saturday night.
The Celtics announced two hours prior to tipoff that Robert Williams will sit out the rivalry contest due to a left ankle sprain. Williams was a late addition to the Celtics injury report Saturday and was initially listed as questionable.
It will be the 34th game Williams has missed this season as he sat out the first 29 contests of the season as he recovered from offseason knee surgery.
Not having Williams will certainly pose a problem for the Celtics against the Lakers. Los Angeles has a terrific front court, highlighted by eight-time All-Star Anthony Davis while also recently trading for Rui Hachimura, that will in all likelihood look to exploit the paint with Boston’s primary rim protector sidelined.
In 17 games this season, Williams has averaged 7.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game.
This is the second time this season Williams has missed the matchup with the Lakers. The last time the two sides met in mid-December, the Celtics staged a furious fourth-quarter rally before prevailing in overtime.
And with the Celtics, who will also be without Marcus Smart for a fourth straight game, not at full strength, it will be even tougher to snap their three-game losing streak.